31 May 2012

ERCAS Launched at Hertie School of Governance

The Hertie School of Governance has recently founded the European Research Center for Anti-corruption and State-building (ERCAS). The center, whose director is Hertie School’s Professor of Democracy Studies Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, aims at conducting and promoting research on state-building and anti-corruption policies with an interdisciplinary approach focused on the relationship between state and society, formal and informal institutions, collective action and transitions between governance regimes.

One of the motivations for the creation of the Center was Hertie School’s participation in the new project ANTICORRP, a large-scale research initiative which has received the largest funding ever granted by the European Commission in the Social Sciences under the Framework Programs for Research and Technological Development. ANTICORRP offered the opportunity to develop an institutional structure in which the topics addressed in ANTICORRP can be explored not only by researchers directly involved in the project, but also by students, PhD candidates and visiting research fellows, thereby contributing to strengthen Hertie School’s engagement in this research area and also to stimulate further research on related topics by young researchers.

As part of the effort to create this new center, the Hertie School sought the input of excellent researchers from different fields of expertise. For this reason, the Center’s advisory board was composed by a group of internationally renowned scholars, such as Larry Diamond, Francis Fukuyama and Robert Klitgaard, among others who have made indispensable contributions to areas associated with the research developed by the center.

Moreover, the center works in partnership with the Romanian Academic Society (SAR) to promote and study collective action initiatives to curb corruption in several countries. Promoting collective action as a means of fighting corruption at the national level is part of ERCAS’s objectives and, in collaboration with SAR, the center offers analytical tools to help civil society activists, journalists and other stakeholders to develop better strategies to reduce corruption in their countries.

In the next fall, ERCAS will host its first international event, when ANTICORRP consortium members participating in three work packages of the project will gather to present the latest developments of their research activities. The workshop will take place on October 19th-21st. This occasion will include an official launching event of the center, with the participation of international scholars and students. More detailed information on the event will be made available on againstcorruption.eu in the months to follow.